Fisker plots 2023 return to Canada with affordable electric SUV

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California-based Fisker Inc. unveiled the five-seat Ocean SUV at the Los Angeles Auto Show last month.Matt Pettit / Handout

Car designer and serial electric-vehicle entrepreneur, Henrik Fisker, is back with a new company and a new electric SUV called the Fisker Ocean, which he says will be sold in Canada for less than $45,000.

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California-based Fisker Inc. unveiled the five-seat Ocean SUV at the Los Angeles Auto Show last month. According to EPA testing estimates, the entry-level Fisker Ocean Sport will have front-wheel drive and a driving range of 402 km. According to the company, the higher-end model will have all-wheel drive and a range of more than 560 km.

Prices for Canada have yet to be determined, but Fisker, the company’s co-founder and CEO, said in an interview that he is aware of the federal government’s iZEV incentive program and its $45,000 price range. “We’ll probably try and probably get our two first models under that, definitely the base model.

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“We already have a ton of reservations from Canada. Right after the US, it’s probably second.”

But Canadians will have to wait a little longer for their cars.

The Emotion, an expensive electric luxury sedan, originally scheduled to arrive in 2019 or 2020, has been put on the back burner to focus on the Ocean SUV.Bill Hornstein / Handout

Production of the Ocean is being outsourced to Magna-Steer, a subsidiary of Canadian auto parts supplier Magna International, which will assemble the SUV at its plant in Austria from November 2022.

Sales should begin in the United States later that year, but Mr. Fisker says he expects a Canadian-market launch, possibly in mid-2023.

This is not his first automotive startup. The initials didn’t end well but he is confident of this latest project.

After a career as a designer, producing now-classic sports cars including the Aston Martin DB9 and BMW Z8, he co-founded his own car company in 2007. That venture, Fisker Automotive – not to be confused with its current firm, Fischer Inc. – Raised more than US$1 billion from private investors and received approximately $200 million in loans from the US Department of Energy. The company had previously delivered only about 2,000 examples of the $100,000 Fisker Karma hybrid sedan Filing for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection in 2013,

“Our first battery supplier went bankrupt and then we were done,” Mr. Fisker says of his earlier venture. They learned two lessons from that failure: One being to be a reliable supplier and the other making sure you have enough money to produce.

Henrik Fisker is the founder, president and CEO of Fisker Inc., an American automaker based in California.handout

His new company has more than $1 billion to work with, which is more than enough to bridge the Ocean SUV to production, he says. Most of that cash was raised last year when Fisker Inc. went public in a SPAC reverse merger. As for the supplier issue, this time the company signed an agreement with CATL, one of the largest battery manufacturers in the world.

“I am probably the only person in the world who has started a car company before and is doing it again,” says Mr. Fixer. “There are so many basic mistakes we don’t have to make again.”

Nevertheless, the new company has already abandoned some of its previously announced products. Efforts to build a self-driving shuttle bus have paid off, Mr. Fisker confirms. The Emotion, an expensive electric luxury sedan, originally scheduled to arrive in 2019 or 2020, has been put on the back burner to focus on the Ocean SUV. The company also abandoned plans to manufacture solid-state batteries, According to ledge,

Mr. Fisker sticks to his company’s ambitious commitment to a lineup of four electric vehicles before 2025, a deadline that is rapidly approaching. Only the Ocean SUV and Emotion sedan have been revealed in anything close to production-ready form. By outsourcing it to the likes of Magna and Foxconn, thereby avoiding the worst of “production hell”, Mr Fisker says he believes the goal is achievable.

Inside, the Ocean SUV is lined with reclaimed material that promotes stability.Fisker Inc./Handout

The Popmobile project is also ongoing. Mr Fisker says the company plans to build a modified version of the Ocean SUV for Pope Francis next year.

This means Canadians will have to wait longer than the Pope to get their own Fischer Ocean. The cars will be sold through company-owned showrooms, although locations in Canada are yet to be finalized. Instead of building a service center, the company is outsourcing that work to third-party fleet-management firms such as Cox Automotive, which will handle the delivery and service.

If the Fisker Ocean goes as promised in 2023, it will find itself facing competition against a rapidly growing list of new mainstream EVs from the likes of Subaru, Toyota, Nissan, General Motors, Volkswagen, Winfast, Tesla and more . , According to a recent forecast by DesRosiers Automotive Consultants, sales of compact electric SUVs are set to skyrocket next year.

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